parents mourningWe will notice three proverbs in today’s devotional that state truths that are both simple and profound.  Proverbs 17:21, 25 identify the sorrows, burdens and disappointments of parents whose children follow the path of the foolish.

Proverbs 17:21 – “He that begetteth [travails; gives birth to] a fool [lazy; silly; refusing to listen] doeth it to his sorrow [depression; heaviness]: and the father [head of a household] of a fool [morally corrupt; sinful; vile] hath no joy [gladness; rejoicing].”

Many parents will identify the sentiment of this proverb for they have known the sorrow of foolish children who brought them to despair of life itself.  A foolish child heaps upon his father and mother indescribable grief, heaviness and shame.  While a proud father boasts of his son’s character and accomplishments, the father of an immoral fool sits in silence and despair.  A foolish son stifles a father’s natural inclination of pride and joy in his progeny.sorrow

Proverbs 17:25 – “A foolish [self-confident] son is a grief [vexation; provoking anger] to his father, and bitterness [grief; sorrow; despair] to her that bare [delivered] him.”

Continuing the theme of verse 21, Solomon observes that foolish children are a source of grief and vexation for their parents.  Loving parents want God’s best for their children, but the parents of a fool know only grief and despair.

Who can assess the physical, mental and spiritual toll foolish children have on their parents?   Without question, your health is affected by your emotional state and attitudes.  Solomon writes:

Proverbs 17:22 – “A merry [rejoicing; happy; cheerful] heart doeth [bringeth] good [pleases; cheers the countenance] like a medicine [cure; free from pain]: but a broken [wounded; crushed] spirit drieth [confuses; disappoints] the bones.”

My friend, we cannot escape the sorrows of living in a sin cursed world, but we can joyaddress how we allow sorrows and disappointment to affect our mental and physical well-being.  A grieving heart will rob you of your physical strength and health; however, a happy, cheerful heart heals and energizes both body and soul.  Focus on the things that bring you joy.  Claim God’s promises and trust Him for He is a faithful God.

Copyright 2015 – Travis D. Smith